Tang Yuan or Glutinous Rice Balls – How To

Tang Yuan

Coloured Tang Yuan

This popular snack from China, glutinous rice balls (tang yuan) are filled with a variety of fillings including red bean, sesame, peanut and lotus. The fillings ooze out from mochi-like dumpling skins, which have a pleasantly gummy texture, due to being made from glutinous rice flour, which produces a chewier dough.  You can make your own or pick up a great selection of flavours from TANG The Asian Food Emporium at 185 Russell Street, Melbourne.
Filling:
Take 2 tablespoons roasted peanuts or sesame seeds. Grind in a mortar and pestle to a fine but not powdery consistency.
Melt 2 tablespoons coconut oil in a small bowl.
Mix the coconut oil with 2 tablespoons of sugar and the ground nuts (or sesame seeds).
Chill the mixture in the refrigerator or freezer for a few minutes before use.

Dumplings:
Mix 1-1/2 cups glutinous rice flour with 2 tablespoons rice flour.
Add 1 cup tepid water.
Combine to make a soft but not sticky dough.
Divide the dough in half.
Roll out each half on a floured board into a cylinder about 1-1/2 inches thick.
Cut the dough cylinders into segments about 1 inch wide.
Take a piece of dough and make an indent with your thumb.
Place the filling in the indent and draw up the sides of the dough to make a ball.
Roll it into a smooth ball shape with your hands.
Lay the dumplings on a rice flour dusted tray, ready for cooking.

Cooking:
Bring a large pot of water to the boil.
Gently stir to avoid sticking.
Simmer for 15 minutes, avoid boiling.
The dumplings are ready when the skins are nearly translucent.
Serving:
Ladle dumplings into soup bowls with the cooking water.
Enjoy!
Ingredients available at TANG The Asian Food Emporium.

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